Oven-baked corned beef brisket is heavenly! The beef comes out tender and succulent. It falls apart and melts in your mouth and it makes the house smell amazing! This post has been updated from its first post in March 2015.
I never heard of boiling corned beef until I had it in college. I know a lot of people love it prepared that way (my husband for one), but the way they did it in the college cafeteria scarred me for life.
Growing up, my dad always seared it first on the stove, then he’d sprinkle on the package of seasoning that came with the meat, wrap it loosely in a tin foil packet and let it slowly braise in its own juices for hours.
Watch the Recipe Video
The deep penetrating smell of the coriander, bay leaves, and allspice would perfume the house. After braising the beef slowly for hours, it would come out tender and succulent. If you’ve never made corned beef this way, you are in for a treat!
Corned beef spices: bay leaf, coriander, cloves, allspice
The Cook-Off: Slow Cooker vs. Oven-Baked
I was out of town this past weekend, so my husband (Jerry) had our kids and grandkids over for a corned beef dinner. He’s always made it in the slow cooker and I’ve always made it in the oven. Both ways are incredibly easy and very tasty, BUT we’ve never put them to a side-by-side test.
This past weekend he did! Here’s our taste-testing crew:
He made his slow cooker corned beef by placing it in the crockpot with 1 inch of water, a dash of liquid smoke, some chopped onions & the seasoning packet it came with. He turned it on low and cooked it for 6 hours. He made another one simultaneously with this recipe below. 👇🏼
Baked Corned Beef Recipe
Even though the baking is a long and slow process, there is very little active prep to do.
- Preheat oven to 275F.
- Take the corned beef out of its package and sprinkle the top (fat cap side up) with the spice pack it came with.
- Loosely but completely wrap it in tin foil. Make sure the fatty side is up.
- Bake for 6 hours.
- Take the corned beef out of the oven, open the tin foil, scrape the seasoning off the top.
- Put the corned beef back in the oven and BROIL it for 2 to 5 minutes, just until the fat cap has burned off.
And the Winner is…
The baked corned beef won hands down! The corned beef baked in the oven was incredibly tender but still firm. Its flavor was more intense than the other and was super moist.
However, I have to tell you… they really liked the other one too. There were NO leftovers of anything!
Why broil corned beef?
This morning over our morning coffee, Jerry said he was surprised that the broiling step didn’t burn the freakin’ tar out of it. Why is this step important? You do it to melt off any remaining fat cap and caramelize the top of the meat. This creates more flavor.
Is this a baking method or a braising method?
Technically the method I’ve outlined in this recipe is for a Braised corned beef. Baking uses dry heat in the oven. Braising uses a combination of dry and wet heat to cook food.
Since the meat is wrapped in foil, it cooks in its own juices (wet heat). Then at the end of the cooking cycle when it’s uncovered, under the broiler for the last 5 minutes of uncovered baking introduces the dry heat.
What corned beef cut is best?
There are 2 cuts of corned beef: the flat cut and the point cut. If you are going to shred the meat for soup, sliders, or egg rolls, go for the point cut.
If you are going to slice it for dinner or sandwiches opt for the flat cut. The flat cut is generally leaner with a nice fat cap that will add loads of moisture and flavor. Plus, a cut of meat that is more uniform will cook evenly.
What is Corned Beef?
Corned beef is a brisket cut of beef. That means it’s cut from the chest of the steer just above the legs. It’s a muscle that does a lot of work so it’s incredibly tough and needs to be cooked a long time and at low temperatures to get it to the point where it just melts in your mouth.
Letting it braise like this in its own juices is so good you’ll want to make it like this all year round. We sure do!
It’s always a good idea to make extra too. The meat shrinks quite a bit and you’ll want leftovers for sandwiches the next day. It makes a killer Ruben on rye!
As the beef cooks slowly, it gives off lots of fragrant juices. After it’s done, strain off this liquid and use it to boil your cabbage.
What to Serve Next to Your Oven-Braised Corned Beef
Sautéed cabbage and smashed potatoes are a classic and traditional pairing.
Honey Glazed Carrots
Dish it up with a side of honey glazed carrots, steamed new potatoes, and cabbage and you’ve got a steaming plate fit for an Irish feast.
Creamy Sugar Snap Peas
Braised Asparagus with Feta and Tomatoes
Creamy Shaved Brussels Sprouts
Once you try corned beef slowly braised like this in the oven, you’ll be hard-pressed to put it in a pot of boiling water ever again.
Baked Corned Beef Brisket
- Corned beef 2 lbs
- Spice packet
- baking sheet
- tin foil
Preheat oven to 275ºF.
Sprinkle spice packet over corned beef and loosely wrap in tin foil.
Place on baking sheet and bake on a lower level for 6 hours.
Open foil and turn oven to broil and allow fat to cook off, approximately 10-15 minutes.
Turn oven to 350ºF and cook for another 30 min.
Aren’t you wonderful! You bring back so many memories. I love you, Dad
One of my favorite things ever love brisket!
This is the first time that I have cooked corned beef this way. Usually I do the crockpot or in a pot for hours and point cut. I couldn’t find point cut, so had to do flat. This method left the meat very tough and dry. I am not sure if it was the method of cooking and maybe it needed even more time, or if it was because it was flat cut, or if I did something else incorrectly. I will say that I have had this happen the other way also.
Hi Ms Ravenclaw, so sorry to hear your dish came out dry. Ugh! A couple of questions for you. How long did you cook it for and at what temperature? This is a “low and slow” steaming process (the corned beef is essentially steaming in its own juices), so the oven should be no higher than 275F and it’s best if you can cook it for 6 hours. Another thing that might have happened is the seal on the foil might not have been tight. This would have let the steam escape and dry out the meat. If your corned beef dried out in the slow cooker, the lid may not have been on tight. Again this would have let the moisture out and left you with a dried-out corned beef. I hope this helps!
So you say in the comment “the oven should be no higher than 250F” but recipe says 275F. So what is the correct temperature?
Hi Jen, Thanks for pointing this out!
The 250F is a typo. I’ll change it to 275F. 275F is the correct temp. ❤️
Last night, I followed this recipe for the 1st time. Everyone said it was amazing. So tender & moist; not dry. I applied a Dijon mustard & BBQ rub all over meat few hours before wrapping closed in foil. I’ll never make corned beef any other way.
Hi Donna, I’m sooooo happy everyone loved it!!! Comments like yours totally make my day. Thank you so much for letting me know!
I haven’t made it yet but the video says bake at 350 for 30 minutes but your video does not show that…not sure what to do . It looks beautiful. Also says broil 10 to 15 min and video say a couple minutes.
Hi Kim, Thank you so much for catching these incongruencies! I’ve made corned beef in the oven so many times, I’ve tweaked the recipe over the years. Thanks to your catch, I took a look at both the video and the blog post with fresh eyes and made the updated changes.
The good thing is, this is a very forgiving piece of meat and cooking method. But that’s no excuse for making anyone confused! I can’t thank you enough for calling this to my attention so I could clarify the recipe.
I believe the video and the above recipe are now congruent. After the corned beef bakes for 6 hours, there’s no real need to bake it for another 30 minutes, so I took that out of the recipe. I have baked it (wrapped up) for up to 7 hours and it was just as tender and juicy! Like I said, low and slow is a very flexible cooking method.
Super good! Normally I would get a flat cut but point was on sale. I usually simmer it on the stove top but wanted to try something different. Modified the process slightly, wrapped the brisket in foil and placed on it on a rack in roasting pan, filled the roasting pan with boiling water up to the foil and covered the pan with foil. 6 hours at 275. No chance that baby was going to get dried out with the water steaming around the foil pack. Melt in your mouth tender, absolute perfection!
Hi Lee! So happy you liked it!!! I love your modifications!
Hi! I’m eager to try your cooking method. Would the over time change if the weight of the corned beef is 5lbs or more? I have one that is 6½lbs and another that is 5lbs. Thanks for your help!
I have a 15lb brisket. Would you lengthen the cook time or leave the same?
Making mine today. Do I need to soak first to remove excess salt?
I’m about to attempt this just quickly, do I rinse this or seer it first and do I just simply put it on a baking sheet with no liquids?
My wife made this today for St. Patrick’s Day and it was simply amazing. I grew up in an Irish Catholic family and corned beef was was made every year for St. Patrick’s Day. When we got married, my wife and I continued the tradition, trying different ways to cook it to keep it interesting. In 47 years, this was without a doubt the best I’ve ever had. The only deviation she made was using Dijon mustard as a binder for the seasoning. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! This will be a permanent addition to our holiday every year.
Forgot to add a rating to my other comment. 5 stars just doesn’t seem like enough. Super delicious!